A 2WD Hybrid-Electric Motorcycle for the US Military?

In the coming years, US special forces may be riding a tw0-wheel drive, hybrid-electric, multi-fuel motorcycle co-developed by BRD Motorcycles and Logos Technologies. Helping make this project possible is a Small Business Innovation Research grant from DARPA. The goal is to make a single-track vehicle for US expeditionary and special forces that will be nearly silent in operation, yet also capable of traveling long distances. Details on the proposed machine are light, of course, but it sounds like the 2WD dirt bike will be based off the BRD RedShift MX (shown above), and use an electric drivetrain, as well as a multi-fuel internal combustion engine to achieve its goals.

Colin Edwards Will Retire from Racing after 2014 Season

Announcing his decision during the pre-event press conference for the Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas, Colin Edwards told the assembled press that 2014 would be the Texan’s last season racing a motorcycle. Citing a lack of improvement on his performance in pre-season testing and at the Qatar GP, Edwards decision perhaps answers the lingering question in the paddock of when the American rider would hang-up his spurs after an illustrious career in AMA, WSBK and MotoGP. Talking about his inability to come to terms with the Forward Yamaha, which Aleix Espargaro was able to take to the front of the pack in Qatar, Edwards was at a loss when it came to understanding the Open Class machine and his lack of results.

MSF Updates Its Basic RiderCourse Curriculum

It is no surprise that statistics from the NHTSA show that motorcycle accidents and injuries are on the rise. According to the 2012 Motor Vehicle Crash report published by the NHTSA, motorcycle fatalities for that year rose to 4,957, up seven percent from 2011, while injuries increased 15% to 93,000. While the NHTSA statistics are misleading because the motorcycle category includes mopeds, scooters, three-wheelers, pocket bikes, mini bikes, and off-road vehicles, new riders need every advantage they can afford. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation has taken notice of these statistics and has revised the curriculum for its Basic RiderCourse to include a new Basic eCourse, which students will take prior to in-person instruction.

Yamaha Trademarks “R1S” & “R1M” at USPTO – “YZF-R1M” Trademarked Abroad – But Why?

Are new Yamaha YZF-R1 models coming down the pipe? That’s the question being asked after trademark filings in the US and abroad tipped off Yamaha Motor’s intention to use “R1S”, “R1M”, and “YZF-R1M” for motorcycle, scooter, and three-wheeled purposes. The filings are being taken as hints towards a possible multiple trim levels of the Yamaha YZF-R1 superbike, with the “S” and “M” designations being different spec machines than the current base model. The “S” nomenclature is a popular one in the two and four-wheeled world, though “M” would certainly be a novel designation, outside of say…BMW.

Bell & COTA Create Texas-Themed Limited-Edition Helmet

Continuing its theme of making limited-edition helmets for premier-class US rounds, Bell Helmets has teamed up with the Circuit of the Americas and Chris Wood, of Airtrix, to create a Texas-themed Bell Star Carbon helmet, just in time for COTA’s MotoGP race next weekend. Available only until April 13th, the Bell/COTA helmet features a red, white, and blue flag motif on the front, with both the American and State of Texas flags visible, which then wrap around the rear to merge with a hardwood design, reminiscent of the floorboards in a Western saloon. The helmet is also crowned with a Longhorn cattle skull, which adds to the Texan motif. The specially designed helmet also features a horseshoe, the COTA logo, and the 2014 Red Bull MotoGP of The Americas logo.

Aprilia Mounting a Return to MotoGP in 2016

Towards the end of the 800cc era, MotoGP looked to be in dire condition. Grids were dwindling, factories were reducing their participation, and teams were in difficult financial straits indeed. By the end of 2011, there were just 17 full time entries, Suzuki was down to a single rider, and were about to pull out entirely for 2012. How different the situation looks today. In a recent interview with the official MotoGP.com website, Aprilia Corse’s new boss Romano Albesiano gave a brief outline of their plans. The Italian factory will continue to work with the IODA Racing team for 2014 to collect data on the electronics and tires, which they will use as input on an entirely new project being worked on for 2016.

This Is Pretty Much What the Monster 800 Will Look Like

With the advent of the Ducati Monster 1200, it was only a matter of time before Ducati’s middleweight liquid-cooled “Monster 800″ would be spotted, and unsurprisingly the machines have a great deal in common. The one big difference seems to be that the 821cc Monster gets a double-sided swingarm, which has become Ducati’s new way of differentiating between its big and medium displacement models of the same machine, see entry for Ducati 899 Panigale. With the spied Ducati Monster 800 looking ready for primetime, and a pre-fall launch isn’t out of the question. Giving us an excellent glimpse into what the Ducati Monster 800 would look like, Luca Bar has again used his Photoshop skills to render up images of the still unreleased “baby” Monster.

Photos of the Mugen Shinden Ni sans Fairings

Given the competitive nature of the electric racing realm, its rare to see the big high-power bikes without their fairings, as teams are reluctant to reveal their secret sauce. Debuting the Mugen Shinden San this past weekend in Tokyo though, Team Mugen did just that, giving us a glimpse into the inner workings of the team’s 2013 race bike, the Mugen Shinden Ni. You don’t have to be an electron-head to get excited by these photos, as any race bike with a carbon fiber frame and swingarm is pretty drool-worthy, though the Shinden Ni’s carbon fiber battery enclosure does hide a great deal of the electric superbike’s geek factor. While the sheer size of the battery bike is impressive, it was expected when the Shinden was first announced.

Mugen Shinden San (神電 参) Electric Superbike Revealed

Mugen’s third purpose-built electric superbike for the Isle of Man TT, the Mugen Shinden San, has been revealed in Japan. Campaigning two machines for this year’s TT Zero race, Mugen has John McGuiness and Bruce Anstey at the helm of its “Shinden San” bikes, as the duo looks for a one-two finish in this year’s race. With MotoCzysz not racing at the Isle of Man this year, Mugen is a hot favorite to take the top podium spots, as well as crack the 110 mph barrier for electrics on the historic Snaefell Mountain Course (Mugen is targeting a 115 mph lap). An evolution on the company’s previous designs, the Shinden San fits 134hp — 10hp more than last year, thanks to a new smaller three-phase brushless motor provided by Mission Motors — into its 529lbs bulk.

Trackside Tuesday: The Winning Personality of Jack Miller

Chatting with a couple of NASCAR fans recently, I was reminded that any competition is boring if you don’t care who wins. But if you do care, then even cars driving around in circles can be very compelling entertainment. Those NASCAR fans really cared about how their favorite drivers finished, and not only how they finished in the latest race, but what and how those drivers were doing off the track as well. Those fans had been captured by the personalities of those drivers. One of the things NASCAR does well is sell personalities. All major sports-related businesses do this to some extent, but some organizations do it better than others.

Photo: This is the Ducati 1199 Superleggera

10/12/2013 @ 7:13 pm, by Jensen Beeler24 COMMENTS

Photo: This is the Ducati 1199 Superleggera ducati 1199 superleggera

Yesterday we brought you the first detail photos of the Ducati 1199 Superleggera, Bologna’s ultra-exclusive superbike, and before that we showed you the magnesium, titanium, and carbon fiber parts that would comprise the Superleggera, and help the machine drop a rumored 40 lbs from its already anorexic body.

Now, we have the first clear photo of the 2014 Ducati 1199 Superleggera, taken apparently at Ducati’s dealer meeting in New Orleans. Only 500 of these beasts will be built worldwide, and first dibs are going to Borgo Panigale’s best customers. Cost is said to be in the $65,000 range for US buyers, €60,000 for Europeans.

Though the photos that leaked out yesterday teased a Corse-inspired paint scheme, this is our first look at the finished livery for the Superleggera. Underneath the Rosso Corsa colors of course are carbon fiber body panels, and visible in the photo is the carbon/titanium exhaust, blacked-out Öhlins forks, and the Öhlins TTX shock.

We’ll echo the sentiment we’ve heard throughout the past week, this bike more closely meets the expectations that we had for the Panigale R, which Ducati brought to market last year.

However, it is important to note that the Ducati 1199 Superleggera is not being built as homologation special (500 units falls short of the 2,000 necessary for WSBK), and instead will likely serve as a halo-bike platform for the Italian brand.

Detail Photos of the Ducati 1199 Superleggera:

Source: Bothan Spies


  1. Norm G. says:

    and there it is. the livery says, “Grandprix of V-twins” and the wheels say, “Budweiser King of Beers”. :)

  2. jesze says:

    Don’t get the rim hate. They look great IMO :_)

    Nice bike Ducati..

  3. mark says:

    Ducati seems to have lost the plot recently… the 1198 was the last Ducati the had the great v twin torquey motor and a full trellis frame… this Super leggerera is just a 1199 R with a D16 paint job… poor form on 2 counts Ducati… you should have made the 1199R more exclusive in the first place with full carbon and all the trick bits and secondly don’t mix up the motoGP paint job with a WSBK style superbike… bring back Piere Terblanche… now there was a real designer!!

  4. Matt says:

    When I first saw this photo, all I could think of is “The Puppy Who Lost His Way” (as read by Miss Lippy).

  5. Is that a Billy Madison reference?? Sometimes, I <3 our readers.

  6. JD says:

    I hate it..

    Because I cant have one..

    I love it…

    But I will probably never have one…

    Piss off Ducati I was loyal to you…. loyal

  7. Marco says:

    I don’t like the 1199/S/R/this one here. Everything from the 916 to the 1198 (at least) was beautiful, but this bike just doesn’t appeal to me. I never rode a 1199 but I’d guess they’re great bikes, but not particularly pleasing aesthetically. Bring back the guy who designed the 999!

  8. Matt says:


    All I’m saying is: those Ducati designers had a responsibility… and it looks like they gave up after an hour.

  9. L2C says:

    The teasers were more exciting than the finished product, at least from that angle. It’s a bit boring, “been there done that,” really. For a bike that exclusive, they really missed hitting that special note of exclusivity. Maybe they should have gone for a monochromatic presentation that referenced a bit of German minimalism (considering Audi). That would have played up the exclusive tech better and created a much sexier package.

    The Panigale Tricolore remains a better looking bike. By miles.

  10. tom says:

    Really impressice data ducati is delivering here. But i can´t help myself – you can paint it the way you want, its still ugly. I dont get the fuss about the Panigale anyway, that “nose” looks just weird.

  11. BBQdog says:

    Never liked vertical lines on a Duc. Paintjob above or tricore, kills the natural lines of the design.

  12. BBQdog says:

    tricore = tricolore

  13. Norm G. says:

    re: “For a bike that exclusive, they really missed hitting that special note of exclusivity. Maybe they should have gone for a monochromatic presentation”.

    my vote is for the brushed ally tank and clear fairings like we saw a decade ago with 999.

    show me the mon’… err… the technology…!!!

  14. Richard Gozinya says:

    Meh, the NCR M16 is way cooler. So long as you like a tuned up Desmo16RR, with a bike made mostly from titanium and carbon fiber. Hey, if you’re going for something exclusive, why go half-way?

  15. Andrew says:

    Well what do you know, it’s a Panigale with some carbon bits and different paint. Did it really warrant weeks of posting ‘teasers’ of artfully drapped shrouds?

  16. Norm G. says:

    re: “Well what do you know, it’s a Panigale with some carbon bits and different paint.”

    oh ffs… “load bearing” carbon, magnesium, and titanium. pfft, luddites.

  17. Norm G. says:

    re: “the NCR M16 is way cooler”

    defense will stipulate… but only from a strict engineering perspective. aesthetics is where they lost the plot. helluva pooch screw when you’re talking a $1/4 mil.

  18. Johnny says:

    looks like Audi is doing the same thing to Ducati what it does to the Lamborghini Gallardo. Milk a particular model with special editions for people who have too much money. There will be plenty of fools who will spend money for these bikes. Panigale superleggra and senna edition. What else is next?

  19. Tanker Man says:

    I have an S model. It’s a tremendous track bike. A little harsh on the street. But for $65k they should have put semi-active suspension on it like the HP4.

  20. Dc4go says:

    Specs are impressive but not liking the GP paint scheme on a SBK. Just leave the carbon unpainted much SEXIER!

  21. Gravel says:

    Ducati 916 Senna was much more exclusive, and a better design.

  22. sideswipeasaurus says:

    I like the image sans bodywork showing all the mag alloy bits and their frameless design. Judging by WSBK and GP results this frameless thing, as ingenious and minimal as it is looks like it may be a short lived departure. Would be cool if they did a naked version that only minimally adds to this image with a redone clock/light support, seat pad, and minimal tank/airbox cover that leaves the airbox frame and engine exposed. That would be a cool special edition. A frameless rolling motor and wheels.

  23. PeterB says:

    I’m going to the factory next week to take a look, so I’ll post a further opinion then. As for the idea that the Senna 916 was in any way exclusive or better designed, jeepers, it was a paint job (and an indifferent one at that) and badge engineered only bike. Spread ver three models, I saw 5 or 6 go through auction earlier this year, for peanuts. You can’t give them away here (UK). This one may be overpriced, and looks are subjective but it’s got a significantly enhanced spec ove the R. Is it worth more? Depends how fat your wallet is and how much you care.